Our house is not on the state owned mains water grid, like many rural houses. Some people are totally off-grid and have a private borehole, but ours is somewhere inbetween, we are part of a group water scheme, specifically the Kilmaley Inagh Group Water Scheme so we have no pumps or purification and it works just like being on mains, but it is more interesting. Our water comes from Lough NaMinna where it is extracted, purified and mostly gravity fed the 16km it travels to us.
There is a government subsidy of the scheme which is used to give domestic customers a free allocation of 160m³ which means that most domestic customers have totally free water. Only commercial and agricultural users pay for water.
As it was a nice day, I thought I would make like a MAMIL and go on a little expedition to find the source of our tap water.
I took a bottle of tap water with me to compare (and to drink).
There is a building housing the treatment plant that purifies the water to bring it up to meet all regulatory standards. Hiding behind some trees I found a sign indicating that when that treatment plant was installed it was part funded by the EU which is nice.
The EU works as a big kitty, 80% of import duties of the common external tariff go into a pot which buys nice things across the area. This means that when goods are circulated all countries have had a taste of the import duties, so it doesn’t matter where the goods were imported. If there is no common pot for the import duties then there is no free circulation of goods. The customs union enthusiasts don’t seem to ever explain whether or not the UK would remit 80% of collected tariffs. If that is the plan and there is no expenditure from the kitty for nice things in the UK then that seems a bit of a poor deal. On the other hand, if the UK doesn’t intend to remit duties, why would the EU be expected to allow free circulation of goods? Simple questions that the mainstream media are not asking the politicians to answer.
Some time later I got back to the other end of the tube, with nothing broken on me or the bike, which was a bit of a relief as neither of us have cycled a decent distance for some years.